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Comparing Parking Lot Light Poles: Choosing the Optimal Lighting Solution

Choosing the right parking lot light poles for your parking lot is essential for creating a safe, well-lit environment. A well-designed lighting system enhances visibility, ensures safety, and improves the overall ambiance. In this guide, we’ll explore the key considerations for selecting light poles for parking lot lights, including materials, designs, wind ratings, and mounting options. Let’s find the ideal lighting solution for your parking lot.

Main Considerations When Selecting Light Poles for Parking Lot Light

What to Consider When Buying a Parking Lot Light

When purchasing parking lot lights, consider light output, energy efficiency, durability, and lifespan. Opting for LED lights can provide significant advantages, including energy savings and longer lifespans.

How to Select the Best Light Pole for Parking Lot Lights

Considerations for selecting light poles include material, strength, aesthetics, and ease of installation. The chosen material can impact the pole’s longevity and resistance to environmental factors.

How Choosing the Right Pole Light Affects Overall Lighting

The choice of light pole can significantly influence overall lighting performance in terms of uniformity, glare control, and light distribution. Selecting the appropriate pole light ensures optimal illumination and enhanced visibility.

Wind Ratings

Understanding the wind rating of light poles is crucial for their structural integrity. Knowing the pole’s wind rating helps ensure it can withstand harsh weather conditions and minimize the risk of damage or collapse.

Different Types of Parking Lot Light Poles

Common Materials Used for Parking Lot Light Poles

Parking lot light poles are commonly made from materials such as steel, aluminum, and fiberglass. Each material offers unique advantages, including strength, corrosion resistance, and affordability.

How to Choose a Light Pole

When choosing a light pole, consider factors like material strength, aesthetics, cost, and environmental suitability. Assessing these factors will help determine the most suitable light pole for specific parking lot lighting requirements.

Different Designs and Configurations of Light Poles

Light pole designs and configurations can influence light distribution, glare control, and visual appeal. Considering these factors ensures the selected light pole meets the desired lighting objectives.

Round vs. Square Light Poles

The choice between round and square light poles often comes down to aesthetics and personal preference. However, square poles tend to have more surface area, allowing for greater wind resistance and increased luminaire mounting options.

Types of Parking Lot Lighting Distribution

Parking lot lighting distribution can be categorized into different types, such as Type I, Type II, Type III, and Type V, depending on the desired illumination pattern. Each distribution type is suitable for different parking lot layouts and requirements.

Recommended Spacing Between Light Poles

The spacing between light poles depends on factors like mounting height, light output, and desired lighting levels. Following lighting industry guidelines and considering the specific requirements of the parking lot will help determine optimal pole spacing.

Benefits of Steel Light Poles

How Steel Light Poles Compare to Other Materials

Steel light poles are renowned for their excellent durability, strength, and resistance to harsh weather conditions, making them a cost-effective option for parking lot lighting. Their long lifespan and low maintenance requirements contribute to their overall value. Steel light poles provide a sturdy foundation for parking lot lights, ensuring stability and reliability.


Steel light poles are a cost-effective choice for parking lot lighting due to their durability and longevity. They require minimal maintenance, reducing ongoing expenses.

Maintenance Required

Steel light poles are known for being low maintenance. They are resistant to corrosion, pests, and weather elements, minimizing the need for frequent repairs or replacements.

Benefits of Aluminum Light Poles

Unique Characteristics of Aluminum Light Poles

Aluminum light poles offer distinct advantages, particularly in areas where corrosion resistance and lightweight construction are essential.

Lightweight Construction

Aluminum light poles are significantly lighter than steel poles, making them easier to handle and install. This lightweight nature also reduces transportation costs.

Corrosion Resistance

Aluminum is naturally resistant to corrosion, making it an ideal choice for outdoor applications such as parking lot lighting. It withstands exposure to moisture, salt, and other environmental factors, ensuring long-term durability.

Mounting Options for Parking Lot Light Poles

Different Mount Options

When it comes to mounting pole lights, there are several options available depending on the application. A variety of accessories and brackets, such as tenons and bullhorns, offer flexibility in mounting the lights and maximizing light output and coverage. Pole lights can be mounted using different brackets, including slip fitter, direct arm, and yoke mounts. Each mounting option has specific advantages based on the installation requirements and site conditions.


Selecting the right light poles for parking lot lights is crucial for optimal illumination and safety. Considering factors such as material, wind ratings, height, and spacing will help in making an informed decision. Steel light poles offer durability and cost-effectiveness, while aluminum light poles provide corrosion resistance and lightweight construction. For optimal performance, choose steel poles with hot-dip galvanization to ASTM A-123 standards, polyester powder coating baked at 200°C, or a combination of both. These finishes offer exceptional corrosion protection, ensuring long-lasting durability.

Understanding the different mounting options further enhances customization and installation. By taking these considerations into account, you can create a well-designed parking lot lighting system that meets your specific requirements. Illuminate your parking lot with confidence and provide a safe, inviting environment for all visitors.


1. What materials are commonly used for parking lot light poles?

Steel, aluminum, and fiberglass are commonly used materials, each offering unique benefits such as strength, corrosion resistance, and affordability.

2. How does wind rating affect light pole selection?

Understanding the wind rating helps ensure the light pole can withstand harsh weather conditions, minimizing the risk of damage or collapse.

3. What are the benefits of steel light poles?

Steel light poles offer excellent durability, strength, and low maintenance requirements, making them a cost-effective option for parking lot lighting.

4. Why choose aluminum light poles?

Aluminum light poles are lightweight and resistant to corrosion, making them ideal for outdoor applications where these characteristics are essential.

5. What are the different mounting options for light poles?

There are several mounting options for light poles, each suited to specific installation needs and site conditions. Here are the common types:

Slip Fit Mount

A popular and straightforward method where the light fixture slips over the top of the pole and is secured with set screws. This design allows the fixture to fit snugly on the pole, making it a versatile choice.

Advantages: Easy to install and adjust, providing flexibility in directing the light. This method is cost-effective and ideal for quick installations or retrofits.

Direct Arm Mount

The light fixture is attached directly to the side of the pole using a horizontal arm. This method often involves a secure bracket that ensures the fixture is firmly held in place. Arms can be available to fit on round or square poles in addition, some can be mounted at a 90 degree fixed angle looking down or have an adjustability feature to angle the light up and down for customized coverage.

Advantages: Provides stable and secure attachment, ideal for applications needing fixed light direction. This setup is robust and can withstand harsh weather conditions, making it suitable for outdoor use.

Yoke Mount

The light fixture is mounted using a yoke or U-shaped bracket, which allows the fixture to pivot. This design is especially useful for directional lighting requirements.

Advantages: Offers excellent adjustability and flexibility in directing the light beam, making it suitable for various angles. It is ideal for environments where lighting needs to be frequently adjusted, such as sports fields or event spaces.

Tenon Mount

Involves attaching the light fixture to a tenon, a pole adapter that is then inserted into the pole. This setup allows for secure mounting and is often used with larger poles.

Advantages: Provides a secure and versatile mounting solution, supporting larger fixtures. It ensures stability and durability, which is essential for heavy-duty lighting applications like highways or large parking areas.

Bullhorn Mount

Uses a bullhorn-shaped bracket that can hold multiple fixtures on a single pole. This method is effective for wide-area illumination.

Advantages: Ideal for achieving broad light coverage with multiple fixtures, often used in parking lots and roadways. This setup maximizes lighting efficiency and minimizes the number of poles needed, reducing clutter and installation costs.

Wall Mount

The light fixture is attached to a wall bracket instead of a pole, making it a practical solution for areas where pole installation is not feasible.

Advantages: Suitable for applications where pole installation is impractical, providing space-saving options. It integrates well with existing structures, offering a clean and unobtrusive appearance while ensuring effective illumination.

Base Plate Mount

The pole is secured to a base plate, which is then bolted to a concrete foundation. This method is known for its robustness and reliability.

Advantages: Ensures stability and is suitable for heavy or tall poles, providing a solid foundation. This type of mounting is highly durable and can support significant weight, making it ideal for high-mast lighting and other demanding applications.

Trunnion Mount

Similar to a yoke mount but typically used for larger fixtures, the trunnion mount allows for precise aiming and adjustment of the light fixture.

Advantages: Offers flexibility in directing the light, making it suitable for specialized lighting needs. This mount is particularly useful in areas where specific light coverage is necessary, such as industrial sites or large outdoor areas.

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